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An already-stellar California Golden Bear recruiting class got even better this week, with Mission Viejo distance swimmer Shane Forker verbally committing.
Forker comes out of the legendary distance program at Mission Viejo in Southern California, and will head north to join a Cal squad that has loaded up on big-time recruits for the past few seasons in a row.
This year’s class already includes #2 recruit Michael Jensen, #5 Jack Xie, #10 Andrea Vergani, #11 Ethan Young and #17 Albert Gwo. Forker brings a badly-needed distance component to the bunch.
Forker’s Top Times
- 1650 free: 15:21.35
- 1000 free: 9:11.25
- 500 free: 4:24.48
- 200 free: 1:38.70
Forker gets better as the distance goes up, and could wind up giving Cal its first true national-level mile threat since Canadian Jeremy Bagshaw, who came up with a fiery 1650 swim to lead Cal to its last national title in 2014.
Already, Forker would have been 11th at last year’s Pac-12 Championships in the 1650 based on his lifetime-best, and would have been the highest-placing Golden Bear. He would have been just outside of scoring range in the 500 as well.
With Forker in the mix, Cal’s class of 2020 is looking both strong and well-rounded. Jensen is a freestyler/flyer, Xie a flyer/IMer, Young a backstroker and Vergani and Gwo sprint freestylers. Forker now brings a distance presence to a team that finished 2nd in the NCAA last season despite not scoring a single point in the 500 or 1650 freestyle.
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